Lindisfarne was an English folk-rock band from Newcastle upon Tyne that released four albums and a live disc between 1970 and 1973 on Charisma, followed by a 1974 fifth studio title on Elektra.

After a mid-1970s disbandment where frontman Alan Hull recorded solo and the others formed Jack the Lad, the two parties reconvened for another round of albums on Mercury in 1978/79, followed by titles on LMP, River City, and Stylus Music during the 1980s.

Members: Ray Jackson (vocals, mandolin, harmonica, 1967-76, 1978-90), Rod Clements (bass, organ, piano, violin, guitar, vocals, 1967-73, 1976, 1978-2004), Ray Laidlaw (drums, 1967-73, 1976, 1978-2003), Simon Cowe (guitar, mandolin, banjo, keyboards, 1967-73, 1976, 1978-94), Alan Hull (vocals, guitar, organ, piano, 1968-75, 1976, 1978-95), Charlie Harcourt (guitar, 1973-75), Kenny Craddock (keyboards, 1973-75), Tommy Duffy (bass, 1973-75), Paul Nichols (drums, 1973-75), Marty Craggs (saxophone, flute, vocals, 1984-2000)


Lindisfarne evolved from The Downtown Faction, an R&B/beat group formed in 1965 by singer-songwriter and multi-instrumentalist Rod Clements.

Clements was born Roderick Parry Clements on November 17, 1947, in North Shields, Northumberland, eight miles north-east of Newcastle upon Tyne. His mother (an occasional pianist) and father (a connoisseur of classical music) encouraged young Roderick’s musical interests.

As a teenager, Clements took to the day’s instrumental rock (The Shadows, The Ventures) and got his first guitar, which he learned to play by ear. He graduated from Durham University with a BA in ancient history and anthropology. In 1965–66, he gigged locally with the first iteration of The Downtown Faction.

As beat gave way to psychedelia and blues-rock, Clements switched to bass and formed a heavier version of Downtown Faction. In 1968, he added Tyneside guitarist–songwriter Alan Hull (1945–1995), fresh off a stint with Skip Bifferty-precursor The Chosen Few. This new lineup renamed itself Brethen.

By 1970, Brethen consisted by Clements, Hull, drummer Ray Laidlaw, and multi-string players Ray Jackson and Simon Cowe. The now folk-oriented band rebranded itself Lindisfarne, named after the tidal island off the northeast coast of England.

Charisma Records, recently founded by rock mogul Tony Stratton-Smith, included Lindisfarne in its inaugural round of signings (Genesis, Rare Bird, Audience, Jackson Heights, Every Which Way, Van der Graaf Generator).

Nicely Out of Tune

Lindisfarne released their debut album, Nicely Out of Tune, in November 1970 on Charisma (UK) and Elektra (US). Alan Hull plays organ, piano (electric and standard) and shares acoustic and 12-string parts with Simon Cowe, who also plays banjo and shares mandolin with harpist-flutist Ray Jackson. Bassist Rod Clements also plays organ, piano, violin, and guitars.

Nicely Out of Tune features seven Hull originals, including the singles “Lady Eleanor” and “Clear White Light (Pt. 2)” and the deep cuts “Alan in the River with Flowers” and “Down.” Clements wrote “Road to Kingdom Come” and “The Things I Should Have Said.” The album also contains covers of Rab Noakes (“Turn a Deaf Ear”) and Woodie Guthrie (“Jackhammer Blues”).

1. “Lady Eleanor” (4:08)
2. “Road to Kingdom Come” (4:08)
3. “Winter Song” (5:04)
4. “Turn a Deaf Ear” (3:51)
5. “Clear White Light (Pt. 2)” (3:59)
6. “We Can Swing Together” (5:39)
7. “Alan in the River with Flowers” (3:05)
8. “Down” (3:05)
9. “The Things I Should Have Said” (3:57)
10. “Jackhammer Blues” (3:21)
11. “Scarecrow Song” (3:15)

Ray Laidlaw – drums
Producer John Anthony

A: Clear White Light (Part 2)
B: “Knacker’s Yard Blues”

21 May 1971
A: Lady Eleanor
B: “Nothing But the Marvellous Is Beautiful”

UK (Official Charts Company) 8
Australia (Kent Music Report) 44 

Fog on the Tyne

Lindisfarne released their second album, Fog on the Tyne, in October 1971 on Charisma and Elektra.

1. “Meet Me on the Corner” (Rod Clements) – 2:38 lead vocals: Ray Jackson
2. “Alright on the Night” (Alan Hull) – 3:32 lead vocals: Alan Hull, Ray Jackson and Simon Cowe
3. “Uncle Sam” (Simon Cowe) – 2:55 lead vocals: Ray Jackson
4. “Together Forever” (Rab Noakes) – 2:34 lead vocals: Ray Jackson
5. “January Song” (Hull) – 4:13 lead vocals: Alan Hull
6. “Peter Brophy Don’t Care” (Hull, Terry Morgan) – 2:47 lead vocals: Alan Hull
7. “City Song” (Hull) – 3:06 lead vocals: Alan Hull
8. “Passing Ghosts” (Hull) – 2:28 lead vocals: Alan Hull
9. “Train in G Major” (Clements) – 3:08 lead vocals: Ray Jackson
10. “Fog on the Tyne” (Hull) – 3:23 lead vocals: Alan Hull, Ray Jackson and Simon Cowe

Recorded Summer 1971
Studio Trident Studios, Soho, London
Producer Bob Johnston
Ken Scott – engineer

Alan Hull – vocals, acoustic, electric and 12-string guitars, keyboards
Ray Jackson – vocals, mandolin, harmonica
Rod Clements – electric bass, acoustic, electric and 12-string guitars, violin
Simon Cowe – lead, acoustic and 12-string guitars, mandolin, vocals
Ray Laidlaw – drums

Trevor Wiles and Franco Polsinelli – sleeve

A1: Meet Me On The Corner
B1: “Scotch Mist”

A: Fog On The Tyne
B: City Song

UK (Official Charts Company) 1
Australia (Kent Music Report) 45
Canada (RPM) 53

Fog on the Tyne became the UK’s eighth best-selling album of 1972 on a Top 10 that includes four various-artists comps and albums by Rod Stewart (Never a Dull Moment), Slade (Slade Alive!), Don McLean (American Pie), and two by Simon & Garfunkel (Bridge Over Troubled Water, Greatest Hits).

Dingly Dell

Lindisfarne released their third album, Dingly Dell, in September 1972 on Charisma and Elektra.

1. “All Fall Down” – 3:47
2. “Plankton’s Lament” (Cowe) – 1:55
3. “Bring Down The Government” – 1:30
4. “Poor Old Ireland” – 3:02
5. “Don’t Ask Me” (Clements) – 3:37
6. “O No Not Again” – 3:24
7. “Dingle Regatta” (Traditional; arranged by Lindisfarne) – 1:04
8. “Wake Up Little Sister” – 2:53
9. “Go Back” (Cowe) – 3:02
10. “Court in the Act” – 3:17
11. “Mandolin King” – 2:37
12. “Dingly Dell” – 6:19

Recorded 14–16 July 1972
Studio Island Studios, Basing Street, Notting Hill, London
Producer Bob Johnston

Alan Hull – vocals, acoustic, electric and 12-string guitars, keyboards, bass
Ray Jackson – vocals, mandolin, harmonica
Rod Clements – electric bass, acoustic, electric and 12-string guitars, violin
Simon Cowe – lead, acoustic and 12-string guitars, mandolin, harmonium, vocals
Ray Laidlaw – drums

Paul Laidlaw – orchestral arrangements, conductor
Bob Potter – engineer

A: All Fall Down
B: We Can Swing Together

A: Wake Up Little Sister
B: Court In The Act

UK (Official Charts Company) 5
Australia (Kent Music Report) 38

Lindisfarne Live

In July 1973, Charisma issued Lindisfarne Live.

Roll on Ruby

Lindisfarne released their fourth album, Roll on Ruby, on November 23, 1973, on Charisma.

1. “Taking Care of Business” (2:56)
2. “North Country Boy” (3:18)
3. “Steppenwolf” (4:58)
4. “Nobody Loves You Anymore” (3:42)
5. “When the War Is Over” (4:58)
6. “Moonshine” (3:50)
7. “Lazy” (3:20)
8. “Roll On River” (5:23)
9. “Tow the Line” (2:36)
10. “Goodbye” (4:36)

A: Taking Care of Business
B: North Country Boy

Happy Daze

Lindisfarne released their fifth studio album, Happy Daze, in November 1974 on Warner Bros.

Back and Fourth

Lindisfarne released their sixth studio album, Back and Fourth, in June 1978 on Mercury.

1. “Juke Box Gypsy” – 2:23
2. “Warm Feeling” (Ray Jackson, Charlie Harcourt) – 4:05
3. “Woman” – 3:26
4. “Only Alone” – 3:44
5. “Run For Home” – 4:21
6. “Kings Cross Blues” (Ray Jackson, Charlie Harcourt) – 3:45
7. “Get Wise” – 3:08
8. “You And Me” – 3:05
9. “Marshall Riley’s Army” – 3:39
10. “Angels at Eleven” – 2:55
11. “Make Me Want To Stay” – 3:55

A: Run For Home
B: “Stick Together”

A. “Juke Box Gypsy”
B. “When It Gets The Hardest”

A: Warm Feeling
B: Woman

Magic in the Air

In November 1978, Lindisfarne released the live double-album Magic in the Air on Mercury.

The News

Lindisfarne released their seventh studio album, The News, in September 1979 on Mercury.

A1 Call Of The Wild
A2 People Say
A3 1983
A4 Log On Your Fire
A5 Evening
A6 Easy And Free
B1 Miracles
B2 When Friday Comes Along
B3 Dedicated Hound
B4 This Has Got To End
B5 Good To Be Here?

A: Easy And Free
B: When Friday Comes Along

“Friday Evening”

A. “Friday Evening”
B. “1983”

Sleepless Nights

Lindisfarne released their eighth studio album, Sleepless Nights, in October 1982 on LMP.

A: Nights
B: Do What I Want


  • Nicely Out of Tune (1970)
  • Fog on the Tyne (1971)
  • Dingly Dell (1972)
  • Roll on Ruby (1973)
  • Lindisfarne Live (1973)
  • Happy Daze (1974)
  • Back and Fourth (1978)
  • Magic in the Air (live, 1978)
  • The News (1979)
  • Sleepless Nights (1982)
  • Dance Your Life Away (1986)
  • C’mon Everybody! (1987)
  • Amigos (1989)


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